March 30, 2007
| by Arlen Schweiger
O Canada, you’ve delivered a beauty of a universal player. Canadian manufacturer Classé Audio has combined its audio and video benchmarks from its established CDP-202 CD player and CDP-300 DVD player into a single “reference” disc player, the CDP-502.
The flexible source component CDP-502 accepts audio CDs, DVD-Video discs, DVD-Audio high-resolution audio recordings, and numerous optical-disc variants including DualDisc, MP3, WMA and AAC audio-encoded discs, as well as Video-CD, S-VCD and JPEG discs, the company says. On the video side, the CDP-502 derives its capabilities from the CDP-300 DVD player that outputs all HD-compatible resolutions, including 1080p, says Classé.
The CDP-502 utilizes the highly non-resonant, steel/aluminum hybrid chassis, and multiple, superbly engineered power supplies. The slot-loading Teac DVD-ROM mechanism — also used in the CDP-300 and CDP-202 — provides superior disc-handling characteristics, reliability and control flexibility, the company says. The new model employs Classé‘s digital-decoding technology, deploying a dedicated CPLD (Complex Programmable Logic Device) and sample-rate conversion to re-construct data as 24-bit/192 kHz signals, as well as dual-differential digital-to-analog conversion topology, where both channels are transformed to differential mode in the digital domain, and then converted by a dedicated device for each signal “half.”
The CDP-502 carries over Classé‘s curved, aluminum industrial design and intuitive control layout common to its antecedents, including the front-panel color touchscreen. The company says this provides more than just a hot look, but enables the product to deliver perfectly, self-prompting operation, convenient previewing of DVD recordings for setup and cueing right at the loading site, and an easy way to manage audiophile-mode “video-off” playback for serious-listening CD and DVD-A sessions. The CDP-502 is supplied with a backlit wireless remote controller, and includes CAN-bus ports for inter-Classé-component communications, RS-232 interfacing for integration into media and whole-house control systems, and IR-remote and DC-trigger interfacing.
The CDP-502 universal reference DVD/CD player is available at an MSRP of $8,500. For more info visit www.classeaudio.com.
Arlen writes about home technology installations and product news and reviews for electronichouse.com
and Electronic House magazine.